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In Need of Water Heater Repair? Things Homeowners can do Before Calling a Plumber


Repairing or fixing an issue with a water heater can sound intimidating.  However, there are simple things that can be done to fix common water heater problems.  As one of Salt Lake City’s top plumbing companies, we often get calls from people having little or no hot water.  Believe it or not many of these issues can be resolved without professional knowledge.  Read these tips below to learn how you can avoid a bill from a plumbing company.  Remember, should you need expert plumber help, we are always a phone call away.

Ensure that your thermostat is working correctly.

A malfunctioning or improperly set thermostat on your water heater can result in water that is way too hot, or too cold for comfort.  Lucky for homeowners, uncomfortable water temperatures are not always the sign of something being broken.

Every water heater will have a dial or some mechanism that will allow the owner to set the desired temperature.  Most water heater experts will advise setting this number around 120 degrees Fahrenheit but can be set to personal comfort.  If you have a tankless water heater installed, you should be able to notice the change in water temp relatively quickly.  You will need to give standard water heaters with a tank time to warm up.

– If you do not notice your water getting any hotter you may have a defective thermometer or temperature gauge.  This is a problem that is usually best handled by a professional plumber.

Look to see if your pilot light has gone out.

The pilot light in your water heater is a small flame that constantly burns.  It is used by gas-burning water heaters to light the internal heater coils.  Your pilot light can be relit by safely following a few simple steps.

  1. Make sure your knob is in the “off” position. We recommend waiting 5 minutes before proceeding further.
  2. Now turn the light to “pilot” this will start the flow of gas to your burner so that it can be reignited. Depending on your model of water heater, you may have a button that will click and ignite the pilot light for you.  In other cases, you will need to use an external flame source to manually light the pilot light.  The best tool for the job is going to be a long barbeque lighter.
  3. Finally, hold down the regulator valve knob for one minute. This allows the safety sensor to notice that the pilot has been ignited.  After one minute, release the knob and ensure that the pilot light stayed on.  If so, you may turn the knob to the “on” position.

You may need to drain your water heater

We recommend flushing your water heater at least once a year.  This is especially important if you have a tank water heater.  The sediment that builds up in the tank can have many negative side effects if not properly washed away.

Visit our blog to see how to flush your water heater. 

These are some steps that can allow you to quickly and easily resolve common water heater problems.  As homeowners it is always a bonus and a relief when household problems can be fixed, all while saving money.  If you have tried these steps above, or believe you have a larger issue with your water heater, call Plumbing Utah Heating and Air today to schedule a service call.

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